Conservatives Dispute GOP Budget Claims


December 26, 2003, 12:35 AM
Figures Cited Are for Authorized Spending, Not Actual Outlays, Say Critics

By Jonathan Weisman
Washington Post Staff Writer
Friday, December 26, 2003; Page A06

After three straight years of double-digit increases in federal spending, President Bush and the Republican Congress say they have the situation under control. But a number of conservatives say actual spending this year will be triple the figures cited by the White House.

The two camps have simply chosen different kinds of budget numbers to bolster their positions. Bush enumerates the amount of spending that Congress authorizes each year. His critics cite the actual amount the government is spending. In effect, the president and his allies are counting the money put into the spending pipeline, while the others count the amount flowing out the other side, some of which may have been slowly trickling through for years.

The debate over federal spending has become politically charged, with both sides tossing out wildly divergent numbers. On Dec. 15, Bush said at a news conference that his administration and the GOP-controlled Congress had held spending not related to the military or homeland security to a 6 percent increase in fiscal year 2002, with a 5 percent increase last fiscal year and a 3 percent increase for the 2004 fiscal year, which began Oct. 1.

J.T. Young, a spokesman for the White House budget office, likened the debate to a holiday shopping trip. If a shopper spends a total of $500 one day using four credit cards, should he tell his wife he spent $500 when he comes home, or should he tell her about each bill as he writes the checks to the credit card companies?"

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December 27, 2003, 02:37 AM


Who would suspect "The Post" of being unbiased:confused:

December 27, 2003, 02:46 AM
Heh, if it's not a source owned by either Rupert Murdoch or Rev. Moon, then it seems that you, fallingblock, will refuse to believe anything in it, even when someone is quoted directly and named. :banghead:

December 27, 2003, 03:57 AM
They've held spending to a 6% increase have they? Will isn't that commendable!

December 28, 2003, 06:34 AM

December 28, 2003, 09:09 AM
Yup, federal spending: there's an issue that will rally the public in the middle of the WOT. (Of course that new "man of God {but only in the South}" Dr. Dean doesn't believe that Iraq was part of the WOT at all).

The 2004 election will be decided by three things:

1. National Security
2. National Security
3. National Security

If the current trend continues, Bush is a shoe-in. If it goes bad, he is very vulnerable.

And to his credit, Dean has not waffled according to public opinion on the Iraq part of the WOT, as have his primary opponents. Problem is, even with all the problems we have had in occupying Iraq, the public still supports the war.

My mother made an interesting point at the Xmas table: Bush seems to be pretty popular, but his approval percentages swing wildly according to the latest events. I think thats true, and is also why the 2004 election is anything but assured at this point.....

El Tejon
December 28, 2003, 10:07 AM
I would not mind being bled through the wallet if the money were going to kill the people that we need to kill. What is really disgusting is that Congress has its collective (both sides) face in the trough while we are at war.:scrutiny:

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